Shore leave at the sea shore

The proposed playground is adjacent to this grass triangle. Photo by Gary Burke

By Kathrin Kobus

Early autumn last year, a sign was put up at a small tree on the green triangle between the footpaths near the beach in Sandymount regarding an application to the DCC to build a new playground.

The proximity of the beach surely inspired the name “Adventures on the Sea Shore”, a name chosen by those who will ultimately use the new facility, namely children.

“The design brief evolved following a consultation process with local school children focusing on providing an outdoor adventure channelling fun and exciting play opportunities in a natural coastal environment,” so NewsFour heard from the Sandymount Tidy Towns Association (STTA). 

The new playground is planned for two to 14-year-olds, from toddlers to early teenagers. Mainly, it will be the pre-schoolers and primary pupils, of course, who can let go of school pressure and stale classroom air while climbing, sliding and maybe just running around chasing a ball in a safe environment before homework has to be done.

“[The area] will be fenced and enclosed by a safety netting, with safety surfacing, swings, climbing wall, monkey bars, tree houses, zip line and of course a tower to replicate the local ESB chimneys, all strategically placed. It is an exhaustive list of equipment that is going to be inserted in this playground.”

Good news came just before Christmas when in mid-December the South East Area Committee of the DCC approved the plans in principle, because it is seen as a future great asset for the local community. The financial aspect will not hit any barriers or snags, either. “The project is funded in its entirety (€227,000) from the Dublin Waste to Energy Community Gain Scheme. STTCA are thrilled that the project is “on its way.”

Firstly though, let’s wait and see if the last weeks of winter have some frosty surprises in store and there’ll be some snow at the sandy beach, the roads, paths and freezing of the ground. ‘Bob the builder and co’ will dig in late spring, mid-April is pencilled in to begin the start of the construction work. The playground with all the trimmings, safety mats and nets should be ready by the end of June 2019, when the summer holidays get underway.

STTCA are deeply indebted to Michael Noonan and all his team in the Parks Department of the DCC, Natalie Boyce, Administrator of the Community Gain Fund, Declan Hayden, DCC South East Area Liaison Officer, all of whom helped us to reach this stage of the development. STTCA will keep you briefed as the work progresses.